YOUTHS IN THE MUSIC INDUSTRY: IYANYA


Iyanya Onoyom Mbuk (born 31 October 1986), known by his stage name Iyanya, is a Nigerian recording artist and performer. He is a Business Management graduate from the University of Calabar. He is best known for winning the 2008 MTN Project Fame West Africa as well as for his popular hit "Kukere". He is the co-owner of Made Men Music Group, a record label home to artists such as Tekno, Selebobo and Baci. Iyanya sings in English and Efik. He released his debut studio album, My Story, in 2011. It was supported by the singles "No Time" and "Love Truly". Desire, his second studio album, contained the singles "Kukere", "Ur Waist", "Flavour", "Sexy Mama", and "Jombolo". He won the Artist of the Year award at The Headies 2013

After graduating from the University of Calabar, he worked in a hotel and sang karaoke at a local bar he managed. Iyanya began developing his vocal abilities at local bars where he sings and perform. He has cited British singer Craig David and American hip hop artist R Kelly as his key musical influences. Iyanya was motivated to pursue music professionally after watching the celebrity lifestyle of 2 Face Idibia and Olu Maintain. He started his career as a rapper.

In 2008, KCee from KCee Presh group convinced Iyanya to partake in MTN's first ever Project Fame singing competition. Iyanya emerged the winner of the competition. The 2008 MTN Project Fame Competition was the beginning of Iyanya's musical career.

He later teamed up with producer DTunes and recorded "Kukere", a single that achieved global success, particularly in Nigeria, Ghana and the United Kingdom. The song was succeeded by his second single titled "Ur Waist".

In 2012, Iyanya begun his own record label with his colleague and manager Ubi Ekapong Ofem, entitled “MADE MEN Melodies AND Administration LIMITED”, aka Made Men melodies Group, TRIPLE M G.

On 16 October 2013, 360nobs reported that Iyanya became the new ambassador for Solo Phones Nigeria, a mobile phone company located at Computer Village, Ikeja. The one-year deal was allegedly worth $220,000 (35 million niara). In addition, Iyanya got a 2014 Toyota Prado from the deal.

In 2013, Daily Independent reported that Iyanya also signed a one-year deal with Zinox Computers (Nigeria's first certified branded computers) worth $300,000. The deal featured him on Zinox billboards and in TV commercials.

He was also endorsed by telecom Giant MTN in 2013 after catching an endorsement of 45Million naira deal. Iyanya is one of the young talented youths in the industry who has achieved so much in little time.